WAKE up and, get MOVING!

chase your dreams

Hi y’all hope you guys have been okay. Your girl is here to give you updates as usual (smiles), that’s what this blog is about anyways.

Climbing the ladder of success is something everyone dreams about and hopes for but very few are ready to put in the hard work necessary to achieve this feat. In my last post i mentioned how i gradually settled for a mediocre lifestyle overtime without even realizing it. I had so many hopes and dreams as a young girl and i was actually willing and was working towards reaching my goals, however as i grew older i became a shadow of myself.

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The first step to moving forward in life a period of almost giving up on yourself is realizing what went wrong and taking responsibility for the part you played. Secondly ask yourself what you are willing to do to change your situation? Personally, my first mistake was isolating myself from loved ones that once made my life colourful (especially my friends) and to be honest i cannot explain how or why i did that. As the people in the Northern part of Nigeria would say ‘it is the people in your life that determine how wealthy you are not the amount of money you have‘. I learned that the hard way. I’m glad i have realized it early enough so i can make amends.

Another mistake was getting cold with all the self development activities i used to enjoy. I lost interest in most of the things that once made me happy and kept me busy, whenever i look back i keep asking myself what went wrong? I have no regrets because every disappointment is a learning experience, trust me, over the past few years i have learned some tough lessons.

Now to the beautiful part of this story, i am pleased to inform you i am aggressively working on regaining  the positive vibe i once had. I have started dreaming again and i am gradually investing in myself so as to bring them to reality. I believe in my abilities again, i have realized i am LIMITLESS. Don’t let anyone make you feel less. I am so optimistic and excited about what the year holds as long as there is life and good health,

just watch this space.

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Please share with me in the comments section how you overcame feelings of inadequacy or what you are doing to change things for yourself currently. What do you hope to achieve this year?

Thanks for reading.

Lots of love Valada!

I’m back, welcome 2018!!!

So it’s a new year and most people are on about how things are going to be different henceforth etc, all I can say is, positive change is a good thing. However how many people are going to stick with their resolutions or even work to achieve their new year goals?

I confess that last year I let pressure and numerous life challenges get the best of me. I lost focus as the months rolled in and subsequently almost gave up on a lot of things I had planned earlier.

It’s very easy to get carried away by our problems and get depressed sometimes. It’s okay to reflect and even cry when things don’t work out the way we expect but giving up must never be an option. That being said, last year taught me some tough lessons but I am happy now because living should be about learning directly or indirectly.

One thing I am certain of for this new year with God by my side, is that I have/will set goals and ensure that I follow them through. Regardless of how unattainable they may seem to those around me. I am totally aware of how much I have depended on others for validation and happiness yet they keep failing me, I now know the true meaning of self worth and actualization. Be ready to let go of things that make you lose peace it isn’t worth it but work hard, develop yourself and be better in whatever you do, it will pay off eventually. I came across a quote online this night that really got me thinking, I had to reflect deeply on who I was, am and the person I hope to be. The quote reads “you only become a success story when you win, so get up and WIN.”

It made me take a step back and go down memory lane. I used to be very ambitious and inquisitive about new interesting things but most importantly i was passionate about being a success. Somehow life happened and I unfortunately let it take it’s toll on me. I gradually forgot who i am and that I’m destined for GREATNESS. The effort I was expected to put into achieving my dreams was gradually channelled into settling for mediocre lifestyle.

Not anymore!!! I have been rudely awakened by the realization that I hold the key to my destiny. No one is responsible for how my life turns out eventually but ME. I believe this year will bring greater achievements because it’s going to be about me and less of others. I have lived for others long enough, now it’s time for me to be a little bit selfish. I intend to share how things unfold with you guys so stay tuned to this space.

Happy New year everyone, may it bring joy peace and prosperity!

With love,

Valada!

Focus

Don’t watch the clock; do what it does. Keep going.” —Sam Levenson

A lot of times we get overwhelmed by everything going on in our lives that sometimes we just want to give up. From experience I have learned to take things easy by slowing down a bit and living each day as it comes. Normally I’m a planner, I plan my life years ahead. It makes things easier for me most times though it doesn’t always go as expected given the time interval of planning and the actual events.

I’m presently at a point in my life where I feel I can take over the world 😂, however I have realized that I can’t do everything at the same time. Actually that has been my main problem over the years. I have too many ideas but usually get frustrated and give up during the implementation process. Especially when it’s taking longer than expected.

That being said, one must never stop trying to be better regardless of how tough the road seems. Life is never easy but with determination and perseverance many have conquered every limitation they encountered on their journey.

If you’re like me, I advise you slow down a bit. Don’t stop just ensure you have a priority list that serves as a guide so you don’t get burned out by taking on too much responsibilities. Nigerians would say ‘slow and steady wins the race’.

Have a fabulous week ahead people, keep working on that dream of yours!

Major lifestyle change

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​I stated in one of my previous posts that I was ready for a lifestyle change especially because my main goal is to lose some weight and be fit. So guys the time has finally come. I decided to do it the ketogenic way. This means that my daily meals will consist of mainly high fat, moderate protein and low carbs. A lot of people may already know about this lifestyle but for those who don’t,  normally our bodies burn carbs as its  main source of energy but a ketogenic diet helps your liver to produce ketones that burn fat as your main source of energy. 

I have done a lot of research on living the ketogenic lifestyle and I believe it’s the best for me. Hopefully I will take you all on my journey to a new improved version of myself. I say so because when you feel good on the inside and your healthy, everything about you changes positively; from your self esteem/cofidence to how you live and take decisions. 

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I started yesterday, allow me to emphasise that it’s been very challenging because I used to eat a lot of carbohydrates and sweets (I have too many guilty pleasures), but all that is about to change. I am however doing a gradual transition as opposed to suddenly switching to very low carb intake, my reason being I want to be committed this time. I don’t want to go from one extreme to another because I tried it before but couldn’t keep up, not that I wasn’t seeing results on the scale. Now its different,I saw it as a diet before but no its a lifestyle. 

I created a page where I will be posting photos of my meals at the end of each day, this is a way to keep me accountable for whatever I put in my system. I know that some days I may fall off the trail but I want to be as realistic as possible so people can know the challenges i’m facing on this journey and hopefully get inspired. 

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I didn’t weigh myself before starting because it’s not just about what the scale says, I got obsessed with my scale the last time I tried this diet I could literally weigh myself five to six times a day. I intend to weigh myself eventually but I want it to be a surprise. I know I weigh between 100kg to 105kg. So I will know how well i’m doing when I decide to check. I also have recent photographs that will serve as ‘before’ while I work on the ‘after’.

Is there anyone of you currently embarking on a journey of change you always wish you started , still hoping to pursue a dream for a while now but still procrastinating? Leave me a comment or email and let’s encourage each other and make things happen. 

The time is NOW.

Love, Valada!

Career goals; Stuck and confused!

students

Recently i have been worried about the direction in which my career is going. If you have read my bio already, you would know that i am a University Lecturer, and that means studying ever ends for me if i intend to continue in this profession (i love my job and i have a passion for teaching by the way). Surprisingly i grew up to discover i enjoy being the student, it’s funny considering i hated school as a child needless to say i was an above average student. In other to grow to the peak of my career (Professor) i need to publish a lot of academic literature in reputable journals and get a PhD while i’m at it. It isn’t an easy task, it takes a lot of dedication, commitment and perseverance to achieve this. I know because my Dad is one and i have learned a lot from him over the years.

I never believed that after getting good grades while undergoing my masters from a UK university i would encounter this much problems with getting admitted as a PhD student. Well that has been my predicament for a while now. I am qualified for  most of the positions but the application process can be very daunting, especially with various schools having different requirements and admission processes. Some universities give you research topics and some do not. Others ask for a research proposal while others do not, some ask you to get a supervisor by yourself while some don’t. Some ask for GRE/GMAT test scores while other don’t. And the list goes on.

I assume you get the picture i’m trying to paint. Sometimes i get frustrated especially because i have a personal deadline to meet. I’ve set out tons of emails to various universities and prospective supervisors around the world. Sometimes you get a reply (positive or negative) but most times you don’t. Well i have decided to use this vacation wisely to continue with my search and not get discouraged regardless of the disappointments. The end result is all that matters to me for now and i’m well aware of the fact that quitters ever win (i am aware because i would have had a PhD by now had i not given up years ago). I could really use some motivation right now, seriously.

What are some of the challenges you have faced in the course of your studies/careers and how were you able to overcome them? Please share in the comments section.

Thank you for reading.

 

Life update

Feels good to be back after being MIA for a few weeks, I’ve missed blogging a lot. A quick update though on what I was up to while I was away.

So I am on break from work and came to be with hubby in Lagos. We’d been apart for a couple of months, I guess you understand that a lot of catching up was necessary 😀. Did I mention our arrival (my son and I) was a pleasant surprise? I had our flights changed so could come earlier than expected and I must say I got him 😂😘.

I have also been out and about a bit but the most memorable was the first ever Baileys bake fest in Africa. I’m glad I was there, it was fun filled. Lots of Bailey’s infused treats to try, games to play and friends to make. The icing on the cake for me was meeting with top Nigerian celebrities I’ve watched and admired for a long time, it was amazing. My husband took it upon himself to make it a special date by pampering me to some goodies there and even after we left the event as a pre-birthday groove 😍.

Yesterday was my birthday and le hubb organized a small house party for me with few family and friends. I had a good time and I truly appreciate him for that gesture, i’m also thankful to all that celebrated me in one way or another. I felt happy and blessed turning 30 years old. God has been good to me. I’m so excited to see what this next phase of my life will be about. I am believing God for breakthroughs that will move me to my next level in life. I will be working on achieving my dreams, it won’t be easy but I know i will succeed.
Finally my son just began to walk/run today, what a pleasant birthday surprise. I am so happy.

I will be more consistent now, thanks for reading. Until next time, stay blessed and safe!

Tips on how to cope with disagreements in relationships

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Source: Google images

Over the years i have found that a lot of times married couples or those in committed relationships like to pretend about the struggles that they face in their marriages, thereby misleading singles into believing that there are no tough days. It is important to be prepared mentally and otherwise before venturing into any serious relationship as it will either make or mar you. Being married for two years has taught me a lot more than i was ever taught in my marriage counselling classes, and it has made me learn so much about attributes i never believed i had (which is a good thing if you look at the bright side of it). I am more understanding and patient now, and i try not to act on impulse especially when i am very angry or happy. I believe these issues should be discussed more instead of just sweeping them under the rug and acting like they don’t exist.

Religious marriage counsellors tend to give you a glimpse of what is to come but do not actually paint the whole picture (not to discredit pre marriage counselling please). Conflict or disagreement between married couples is normal and does not imply that there is no love lost between the two, if anything, it makes you realize how much you mean to each other especially if both parties understand each other. That being said, the good days should be more than the bad days not the opposite (do not ever condone violence or abuse of any kind, run for your life while you can!)

Based on my experience and that of others i’ve observed, i would like to share some tips that have helped me cope during my challenging times in the two years of my marriage.

  • Communicate and be active listeners while you’re at it; this point cannot be overemphasized (sounds cliche i know but it is what it is). A lot of times we get carried away by life’s events that we forget how important it is to talk to each other. And please not necessarily about serious issues, sometimes keeping each other updated about the day helps keep couples connected and feel more involved. This is more crucial for those in long distance marriages like myself. When there is a disagreement, it is better to discuss it and get it settled. Many marriages have ended over trivial reasons that could have been resolved if both parties had been reasonable enough to talk and hear each other out. Showing lack of interest when the other person is talking leads to more disagreement. Avoid dialogue when any party is angry or furious.
  • Honesty is key; Be honest about how you feel when conflicts are being resolved in marriage. When you lie or withhold information, you end up making matters worse because sooner or later the truth will be revealed and will eventually lead to distrust. On the other hand, if you’re not real with your partner about your likes and dislikes, you will keep getting hurt as a result of your partner not being aware of the reasons for your getting hurt. So be real.
  • Be willing to compromise: When a disagreement is being resolved, it is mandatory that both parties agree to compromise on whatever the reason for the controversy. Being selfish in marriage makes both parties bitter and may subsequently lead to divorce or separation.
  • Let bygones be bygones: After matters have been settled, it is only wise to forgive each other and move on with life on a happy note. Constantly making reference to past conflicts will affect the relationship negatively. Just learn from past mistakes and be better next time.
  • Go on dates occasionally or as often as possible; This last tip sounds so simple and predictable but i assure you that its one of the things most married couples hardly do. Spending more time together helps you create sweet memories that you both will cherish when your aged and it brings you closer together in love and friendship. If you have to schedule date nights or days please do so. Besides, that’s what most ladies desire but hardly ever ask if the men do not offer. The more time you spend with each other, the better for your relationship. it does not have to be expensive.

I hope this write up is educative and inspiring enough to make someone in a committed relationship going through a tough time feel better. For those who are single please learn from those who are experienced so you don’t end up making decisions you will regret later.

If you have more tips to share please do that in the comments section, thank you for reading.

Until next time,

Love more and worry less!

Counting down to 30

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Source; Google images

There is no greater feeling like looking back at your life and realizing how far you’ve come. I reminisce a lot, not because i have a lot of time on my hands but because counting my blessings gives me joy. Often times we get carried away by our troubles and frustrations which eventually lead to depression. The world is already full of sad events, let’s not make things worse. We all should take a chill pill, relax and enjoy life. Be happy regardless of our individual circumstances.

There are so many reasons to be happy, for example; the gift of life, family, friends, laughter, good health, shelter, food, water, peace, love, career, etc. they are too many to be listed here. If you are depressed, sad or going through a tough time, please drop it and look forward to brighter days ahead. No one will make that choice for you except you!

It is normal to get upset sometimes but at the end of the day we should not let that rob us of the excitements that come with being happy people. I have experienced terrible times of betrayal from people i hold dear to my heart, and i threw the longest pity party for myself till there was no strength or tears left in me. One day i asked myself if it was even worth my energy and time, as you know the answer was and still is an obvious ‘NO’. That was the moment i decided i would live a fulfilled life and keep being the cheerful happy-go-lucky girl i was when i was much younger.

So far it has paid off, i’ve lost so many friends but i gained few others that i wouldn’t trade for the world. One thing i cherish in life is loyalty and that is because i am loyal to a fault. I however, learned over the years not to expect such an expensive virtue from people who do not understand its concept. One of my aunts would always say ‘blessed are those who do not expect, for they shall not be disappointed‘.

20 days to my 30th birthday and i say ‘NO’ to every form of negative energy around me. I choose to live, love and laugh in peace like never before. It is time for me to take good care of myself for me and my family, i intend for my son to have happy memories growing up (so help me God). Memories he will take with him for life till he starts his own family.

I still have a lot  to accomplish as long as i am alive ad healthy. That is, new people to meet, new places to visit, achieving my career goals and so much more. This is just the beginning for me, i have never felt so fresh and driven to succeed like i do now. I hear 30 is the new 20 (LOL, I wish).

On this note, i wish to announce that i will be embarking on a ketogenic lifestyle journey soon. I have been overweight for so long, i feel this is the best time for a change or rather, a transformation from the inside out. I will be updating you on my progress and i will also try to post recipes alongside photos of my meals. So stay tuned for that, i will need all the encouragement and motivation i can get.

Did i also mention my son and i will be going home to hubby soon for the summer break?! We are so excited to be reunited after almost six moths of being apart (some of the sacrifices families of military personnel make, but we do it with love). Thanks for reading guys.

Until next time, stay safe and happy. Remember YOLO!

i-Care Support Foundation: Maiden outreach

A journey of a thousand miles they say begins with a step. 
Finally one of my age-long dreams came through. My charity organization is now up and running to the glory of God. 

Last Saturday (3rd of June) was  our first outreach to the internally displaced persons (IDPs) in a small community called ‘Sangere’, in Yola – Nigeria and it was amazing. They were affected by the Boko Haram insurgency in the Northeast and had fled their villages with nothing but their lives. A lot of them lost family members and all their property. So they are starting all over again, with nothing. Sad, but those of us that witnessed it first-hand understand what they went through and still trying to recover from.
A very humbling and fulfilling experience it was, I must say. We didn’t have a lot to give, but the little we presented was with love and it was well appreciated. We took some fairly used clothes for men women and babies, shoes, bedsheets, and food items.
I am so thankful to those that donated and my wonderful team of volunteers, they did a good job. Looking forward to our next event.

Peace😇.

Note* I tried to upload photos from the event but I wasn’t successful due to poor internet coverage, I will update the post when I get better network. Thanks for reading.